iP4200 BK disappeared

elenhil

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Hi folks!

I had a small problem with my InkTek replacement inks lately - that is, I've used the very last drops to refill my BK 'inkpot'. Should've said 'dregs', because the black nozzle immediately begun clogging up. After several deep cleaning sessions I decided to soak the printer head (replacing the ink itself, of course), but the end result is that it stopped printing black altogether.

I admit I carelessly ran a cotton swap over the black nozzle when cleaning the head. Could that have damaged the head? The test pattern for black is entirely white now :(
 

The Hat

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Ops, doing several deep cleans may have done more damage than you think, post your current nozzle check.. O' and dont do any other test prints...;)
 

elenhil

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Oops indeed. Nothing to post, really - it's just an empty BK line, (no letters, no grid, nothing) followed by the rest of the colours intact.
 

elenhil

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And I already did a LOT of test prints in between the cleanings...
 

stratman

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Nothing to post, really - it's just an empty BK line
Maybe so, but maybe there is something else going on you might not recognize. We ask for nozzle checks because self-reports have not always been accurate.

Please post your recent nozzle check as The Hat asked so we can have a proper look.

And I already did a LOT of test prints in between the cleanings...
I worried this was what you did and eventually cooked the nozzles dead.

Canon inkjet print heads heat up the ink before spitting it out on the paper. The print head also uses the ink to cool the heated nozzles simultaneously. If a clog forms in a nozzle(s) and you continue to print anything other than nozzle checks then the nozzles can irreparably burn out.

Too many Deep Clean cycles in a short period of time can also burn out the print head.

It is also possible you had an electrical failure of the "BK" nozzles, not of your fault, which is also irreparable.

BTW, when you say "BK", do you mean the Pigment Black ink or the Dye-based Black ink? Either way, the printer may still be usable but require selecting the proper paper setting (and maybe greyscale) to use.

It is doubtful you will find a new print head replacement.

I admit I carelessly ran a cotton swap over the black nozzle when cleaning the head. Could that have damaged the head?
While the forum generally would not recommend using cotton swabs in this manner, lightly swabbing with a cotton swab may leave cotton fibers behind but should not do serious damage.
 

elenhil

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IMG_20191016_222005.jpg hereIMG_20191016_222020.jpg
 

elenhil

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Here's how it looked before I tried soaking the head, and after.
 

stratman

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Thank you for uploading the nozzle checks. The images give more information than you were able and more accurately as well.

  1. The affected ink is the Pigment Black (PGBK), not the Dye-based Black (BK).
  2. The first nozzle check has an appearance of blocked nozzles based on the horizontal wedge of missing ink the the vertical black bar. It is curious, though, that there is an inconsistent pattern of ink loss horizontally across the lattice work. At this point, there was still hope for return of most if not all affected nozzles. If only you had sought advice here earlier! :hit
  3. The second nozzle check does show complete loss of Pigment Black ink. While you can try flush and soaks, it is likely there is now an irreparable failure of the Pigment Black nozzles based on the story you have told. There is Pigment Black ink still in the cartridge?
  4. Even with the loss of the Pigment Black nozzles, you can still use this printer by selecting any of the Photo Paper settings to print, even if you are using plain paper, as these settings do not use Pigment Black, instead using all the colors of Dye-based Ink to make black.
  5. Text will not be water or Highlighter resistant.
  6. Blacks will not be as black as when using the Pigment Black on the Plain Paper setting.
  7. Pigment Black will still be used up during maintenance purges. Don't buy OEM Canon Pigment Black cartridges because you will only be throwing money down the purge unit drain. Use aftermarket Pigment Black ink to save money.
 

elenhil

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There is still PGBK ink left, sure. Much good it will make me now...

Thanks a lot for tip no. 4!

Still, what should have been the proper procedure in this situation? Just soak and let it dry? No cleaning sessions afterwards?

Or, rather, seeing as there are lots of used 4200s floating around, some of them barely used and dirt-cheap, what is the proper procedure for soaking a long dormant printer head?
 

Artur5

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@stratman is right, that PGI black seems totally dead. On the other part, it’s unlikely that soaking the printhead did the damage. Otherwise the other colors would have suffered too but they’re fine. It can’t be either rubbing with a cotton swab. You could have clogged some nozzles at random but no all of them. It looks like a total electrical failure.
One question : those repeated cleanings that you performed, were they only for the pigment black or for all the colors ?
 
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